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radio 1940
ad noiseam   2002
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ad noiseam website

album rating: 3

submitted by anton on 13-Aug-2002

this album by wilt is by far the most ambitious release on ad noiseam - packaged in a gorgeous digipack with the artwork that seems to be inseparable from the music. it is a follow-up to wilt's previous release on ad noiseam, and a continuation of his exploration within the world of found sounds and carefully crafted atmospherics.

I have spent many hours, trying to get a grasp of this album in its entirety - radio 1940 works as a whole, it is really hard for me to fully get into a single, isolated track - it has really well-built moments here and there, grabbing my attention with its solid ambience, and at the same time there are places where the sounds just do not fall into place; some of the raw, untreated noises stick out, tearing through fragile atmosphere. it is definitely a treat for anyone that has a similar obsession with carefully watching the world around, and collecting sounds, treating them and putting them together - in this case it is the process that matters almost as much as the final result. I definitely do enjoy the variety of sounds on this album - the way they are placed together, the way they intersect and contrast. radio 1940 is the work that demands focus and attention and ability to follow every sound evolution. perhaps it is my lack of exposure (or lack of "source material" - cultural references that would make it possible for me to construct really cinematic imagery fitting this music), or simply different taste, but somewhere on this road the music stops being evocative, becoming an intricate, yet very artificial sound collage. it might be a desired effect for some, but for me this shift into the realm of intellectual enjoyment loses much of the initial appeal that stems from the title of the album, the artwork, the track titles. suddenly I find myself on the other side of the fence, craving for less abstract interpretation of these themes.

the abstract nature of radio 1940 will result in interpretations that could be almost opposite, depending on individual's background within the world of references created in this album. this is a very intriguing album, with an impressive amount of material to choose from, and undoubtedly wilt's best work to date.

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